Building a Sustainable Men’s Ministry: No Man Left Behind

What Men Want and Need
Excerpts from No Man Left Behind


IN OUR EXPERIENCE with men and men’s leaders, we have found three things that every man wants: something to give their lives to, someone to share it with, and a personal system that offers a reasonable explanation for why the first two are so difficult!

All men want something to give their lives to: a mission, a cause, or a purpose. Every man wants to get to the end of his life and feel like it counted for something. In addition to something to give their lives to, men want someone to share their lives with. Typically it includes marriage, but it goes beyond marriage, as well.

All of us are looking for meaning, happiness, peace, tranquility, contentment. By default, a man will look for satisfaction primarily in his accomplishments (something to give his life to) and in other people (someone to share it with.)

But most men will also tell you they are frustrated with the difficulty of finding success in accomplishment and relationships. Most of the “systems” that men buy into seem to answer one problem or the other: Work as hard as you can to build a successful career, stay late, take on big projects, travel on a moment’s notice. But a system designed to maximize your career will undermine your ability to have meaningful relationships in your life. You might build a prosperous lifestyle, but you will have no one to enjoy it with.


The obvious answer to the question, “What do men need?” is that they need the gospel. The gospel is the one system that really works-a system that helps men change the core affections of their hearts.

This process of helping men move from relying on themselves or others to relying on God is discipleship. It is a process of deepening a man’s relationship with God.

Rev. Gary Yagel began his ministry as a volunteer Young Life leader, served 4 years as a youth pastor and over 20 years as a church planter and senior pastor in the Presbyterian Church in America. He has led various men's discipleship ministries, including Top Gun, and spoken to numerous men's groups. He is a Field Network

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